Charlotte, NC Passes Strategic Mobility Plan

Charlotte, NC recently passed a strategic mobility plan designed to improve public transit options, reduce driving, eliminate traffic deaths, and increase economic mobility for public transit users. The Plan intends to support the goals and objectives of the Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan; integrate existing transportation plans and policies into a single Strategic Mobility Plan, establish new goals for prioritizing transportation investments and measuring progress, modernize transportation policies, and make the city more resilient.

A major goal of the plan is a 50/ 50 mode share by the year 2040, where 50% of all travel will happen through walking, cycling, or public transit. The city has come up with a number of ways to move towards this goal.

To reduce waiting times and encourage the use of public transport, the city will serve 390 miles of bus routes at a “high-frequency” rate, with the buses running every 15 minutes or less. The Charlotte Department of Transportation, Charlotte Area Transit System, the Metropolitan Transit Commission, and the Charlotte Regional Transportation Coalition have coordinated to service a total of 643 miles of routes during peak hours in order to integrate the public transit service for residents in the suburbs and exurbs of the city. 

The Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) will transition from having a central hub to creating mobility hubs throughout the city. These hubs would serve as defined centers that support multi-modal transportation options, such as walking, biking, and microtransit. Microtransit uses on-demand smaller shuttle vehicles to service less-populated areas and help resolve the first-mile/last-mile problem that many commuters experience. 

Another component of the Strategic Mobility Plan is the Charlotte Streets Manual, a citywide mobility policy map that categorizes Charlotte’s arterial street network into defined street types that will support multimodal transport.